Mother of girl found dead in rural Alberta charged with first-degree murder

The mother of a nine-year-old girl found dead in a vehicle on a rural road in west-central Alberta has been charged with first-degree murder.

DIDSBURY — The mother of a nine-year-old girl found dead in a vehicle on a rural road in west-central Alberta has been charged with first-degree murder.

Laura Coward, who is 47, cried as she appeared in Didsbury court via closed-circuit television.

She was to face charges of abducting the girl in violation of a court order, break and enter and theft.

But RCMP say those counts were replaced by the first-degree murder charge.

Coward was arrested on Tuesday near Sundre when she was found standing outside the vehicle in which her dead daughter, Amber Lucius , was discovered.

Her next court appearance has been set for Oct. 6 in Calgary.

Amber’s father, Duane Lucius, says a funeral for his daughter will be held later this week.

He says it’s important that parents not take their children for granted and to make time to “have fun” with them because they could be taken from them at any time.

Lucius says he is devastated by the loss of his “innocent, sweet and lovely daughter.”

“My heart is broken. The time I had with Amber was cut short but the time I had with her will always be the most special time of my life,” he said in a statement released Monday.

Court documents describe the bitter divorce of Lucius and Coward and a custody tug-of-war over their daughter that continued up until the girl was found dead.

Just Posted

WATCH: Red Deer’s noxious weeds are a goat’s dietary delight

Piper Creek Community Garden gets chemical-free weed control

Get your guilty pleasures: Westerner Days food

Traditional sugary treats were served up by the plate, bowl and bucket… Continue reading

Centrefest brings feats of daring to Red Deer’s downtown

Fundraising was a tough slog, but it came together in the end

Count shows slight decrease in Red Deer’s homeless

In two years, the number of homeless in Red Deer has decreased… Continue reading

Redoing hip surgeries are costly, says new study

Redoing hip and knee replacements costs Canada’s health system $130 million a… Continue reading

WATCH: Cirque ZUMA ZUMA puts on a show at Westerner Days

ZUMA ZUMA performs three times a day during Westerner Days

Jones’ punt return TD rallies Riders to road victory over Ticats

Roughriders 31 Tiger-Cats 20 HAMILTON — Brandon Bridge kept Dave Watford on… Continue reading

PHOTOS: Red Deer’s Iron Buffalo rocks Westerner Days

Iron Buffalo opened for Helix and Lee Aaron Thursday at the ENMAX Centrium

Zuckerberg’s Holocaust comment puts Facebook on the spot

NEW YORK — Denying the Holocaust happened is probably OK on Facebook.… Continue reading

Brazilian police arrest ‘Dr. Bumbum’ after patient dies

RIO DE JANEIRO — Brazilian police have arrested celebrated plastic surgeon Denis… Continue reading

Canadian marijuana company Tilray has first US pot IPO

SEATTLE — A Canadian company is the first marijuana business to complete… Continue reading

Dolphins anthem punishment includes suspensions

Miami Dolphins players who protest on the field during the national anthem… Continue reading

Soy “milk” makers may need to find alternative description

NEW YORK — Soy and almond drinks that bill themselves as “milk”… Continue reading

Calgary woman convicted in son’s strep death granted day parole

CALGARY — A woman whose son died after she failed to take… Continue reading

Most Read

Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month